Asian studies humor

Just wanted to share a couple of nerdy/humorous things from yesterday. First, a snippet of dialogue:

American Grad Student: Dude, can I ask you a question? Do you find, being a grad student, that you have no life?

Taiwanese Grad Student: Ah, of course! What’s wrong with that?

Priceless. One can never be sure whether things like that will still be funny when you try to transcribe them…but it was pretty funny at the time.

This second joke requires a bit of context — we were watching a documentary from the 90s about Korea’s rapid development and the film was profiling a guy called “Frank” who owned a small factory making tennis rackets.  At the time, small industry in Korea was faced with restricted access to foreign markets, rising labor costs, and limited access to financial resources since these were reserved for the huge government subsidized companies or chaebol. (This pattern later became one of the major factors contributing to Korea’s vulnerability to the Asian financial crisis)

SO Frank has to go through a Japanese import/export company to get his rackets overseas. The Japanese company gets all the publicity and they also they give him shit about the quality of the rackets — even though these are like specialty, hand made, top of the line rackets.

The PR blitz features tennis legend Bjorn Borg (winner of 5 consecutive Wimbledon’s, a record matched only by the amazing Roger Federer) using one of these rackets.

At long last, the humor:

Film Narrator: Bjorn Borg is pleased with the tennis rackets. But the Japanese executives are still dissatisfied…


Alright, forgive me…now back to work.


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